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Everything posted by BFamily

  1. Our easiest dinner meals are those that can be assembled and/or cooked during lunch. I make a chicken stir-fry quite often (it's a family favorite) that I can cook during lunch, refrigerate and reheat before dinner - it's also a complete meal in itself - rice, chicken and vegetables. I also will assemble meals like stuffed shells or lasagna at lunch and toss them in the oven at dinner time. Lunch is also the perfect time to throw a marinade together with some meat to be grilled or roasted later in the evening. Another simple meal we enjoy is roasted veggies with broiled bread - I cut up a variety of veggies, coat them in olive oil, sprinkle them with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper and roast until tender. Clean up is a breeze, too, because I line my baking sheet with foil and just toss when done.
  2. :iagree: We've visited several places across the state. Alabama State Capitol Old Alabama Town - Montgomery Dexter Avenue Baptist Church (MLK, Jr. church) - Montgomery Civil Rights Memorial - Montgomery Civil Rights Institute - Birmingham U.S.S. Alabama Battleship - Mobile Fort Morgan - Fort Morgan Fort Gaines - Dauphin Island Fort Toulouse - Wetumpka Helen Keller home - Tuscumbia Edmund Pettus Bridge - Selma Dismals Canyon (Indian sites) - Phil Campbell Indian mounds - several locations
  3. We take off from Memorial Day through 4th of July week. During that time, we do some math review a few times per week, and we continue our Bible studies. Otherwise, that is their time to indulge themselves in whatever they enjoy - laziness, pick-up games of basketball with neighborhood friends, practicing for their baseball tournaments in mid-June, working on their secret fort located somewhere in the woods, fishing and swimming in the creek behind our house, playing video games, etc. We start a 1/2 time schedule from the week following the 4th of July through the day the PS kids return to school. We only work on "skills" subjects - math, reading, writing, English + Bible - so they have time to continue enjoying their interests. On the day the PS kids return to school, we pick up our full schedule.
  4. We covered AL history over a semester's time in our co-op. Otherwise, I had no plans to cover it at all. One of the member's of our co-op had a copy of a textbook from the 80's that we used. We didn't cover everything, but we did cover the basic geography of the state (# of counties, where our county is located, physical landscape, major rivers, etc.) and how that affected transportation and city growth. We also covered battles that took place here, Native American tribes from the area, the civil rights movement and important people (George Washington Carver, Helen Keller, Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Jr., the Tuskegee Airmen, etc.).
  5. We will be having a whole, herb-roasted chicken, roasted cherry tomatoes, roasted asparagus, risotto, pound cake, whipped cream and sliced strawberries. Our menus for each holiday are pretty much set in stone. I may alternate out a side dish or dessert here or there, but everything else stays the same. At least holiday meals are always easy at our house, because I know exactly what we're having, and my DH and DC know exactly what they have to look forward to each holiday.
  6. DS11 started breaking out about 5 months ago. He might have a pimple here or there, so i bought him some cetaphil and a zinc mask. Problem solved...for a while. About a month later, he broke out all over his face. I bought some clearasil face pads for him to try, but he said they burned his skin. His skin continued to get worse. I began researching other options and ran across several articles linking skim milk to acne, especially in boys. We only drink skim milk, and my boys drink a lot of it, so I bought whole milk that very day and switched them over. Within a week, his skin was almost completely clear. He has been acne-free for about two months now. He continues to wash daily with the cetaphil, but the zinc mask and clearasil face pads have been put away - hopefully, for good.
  7. DH and I hid our middle one from his parents until I was 5 1/2 months along.
  8. 1. Butterflies. And I am glad to see I'm not the only one. If one looks like it might be about to land anywhere near me, I get on the move fast. I think I'm afraid of them, because my younger sister used to catch them all of the time, and she was not careful about doing it. By the time she got the butterfly to show it to me, at least one, or both, of its wings would fall off. :scared: :ack2: 2. Deer. We live in a very rural area, and there are lots of deer around. I refuse to walk in the early morning or late evening for fear of being run down by one. I think I watched way too many episodes of "When Animals Attack" when I was younger. 3. Raccoons. They get in our carport frequently, and I always make lots of clatter on my way out in the evening. But, I'm always afraid of the one that I "just know" is under the car that will slice up my ankles as I try to get in.
  9. I'm planning on having DS4 start K in late fall after he turns 5. We're keeping it simple. Phonics - Abeka Handbook for Reading + their phonics workbooks & readers Handwriting - Abeka manuscript Math - Rod & Staff 1 Character/Bible - Our 24 Family Ways + Truth and Grace Memory Book #1 I plan to read aloud to him for 15-20 minutes per day, and he'll get to watch educational videos (Leapfrog, science or nature documentaries with his big brothers, etc.) throughout the week. I also plan on having him complete different activities weekly to further improve his fine motor skills, like M=puzzles/mazes/hidden pictures, T=cutting/pasting, W=coloring/drawing/tracing, T=watercolors/fingerpaints/play-dough, F=pony beads patterns/legos. He will also continue to listen to audiobooks during his rest time each day.
  10. You cannot predict someone else's behavior - especially when that behavior goes against all that is considered normal and proper within our own perceived notion of what is normal and basic human decency - there is no way you could have seen it coming. I am so sorry that you are having to go through this. :grouphug:
  11. A few things we've used/are using: Scripture Memorization Our 24 Family Ways http://www.christianbook.com/apps/product?item_no=920888&event=ESRCG|M Pearables http://www.pearables.com/ Bob Schultz Boyhood Series - currently using with DS10 and DS11 - excellent! http://www.christianbook.com/apps/easyfind?Ntt=Bob+Schultz&Ne=0&N=0&Ntk=keywords&event=ESRCG%7CM
  12. We stayed in the rental linked below for a week, and it was absolutely beautiful! It is directly on the ocean, and the pool was only one or two houses down. We went right in the middle of summer, and it was very quiet, peaceful and serene. It's about a 15 minute drive into Gulf Shores for shopping and dining, but I really wanted the quiet and knew Gulf Shores/Orange Beach would be packed with the college crowd. The ferry to Dauphin Island is only about a one to two-minute drive from the community, and I would definitely recommend visiting the estuarium at the sea lab there. http://www.homeaway....-rental/p313479
  13. It is dense and teacher-intensive, but it is well worth it to me. DS and I read slowly through the chapter together. At the end of each chapter are questions that he answers orally. Following the questions, there are assignments that put the topics from the chapter into practice. I model the assignment first while thinking out loud, and he observes me from my initial thought processes to putting the assignment down on paper. Then we do the assignment together with input from both of us. Finally, he does the assignment completely on his own. For each phase, we change the topic out, so we're not re-writing the same thing over and over and over. After completing each assignment through these three phases (modelling, working together and independently), he has developed a firm grasp on the concepts. There is also a vocabulary section for him to complete after he has done the writing assignments. It is a slow-going and involved process, but he has learned quite a bit from the first three chapters (we're only at the beginning of chapter four so far), and we are both enjoying the book.
  14. My DS11 will be doing the Teaching the Classics/Windows to the World combo next year with Excellence in Literature being our goal for the following year. He is currently working through WWS and Figuratively speaking right now. I know I read somewhere that before beginning EiL it is recommended that the student complete WttW and The Elegant Essay. However, I found The Lively Art of Writing at CBD for $5.99, and it teaches essay writing just like Elegant Essay, but it is so much cheaper. We are completing LAoW in addition to WWS at 1/2 pace through the end of the summer to make sure he is prepared - and with these two writing programs, I'm positive he will be ready.
  15. :iagree: We love this book! Gail Gibbons also has super cute books covering various science topics that are really good for younger children.
  16. I serve veggies several ways in the morning. I might bake a large pan of brown rice in the evening and refrigerate. Over the next several mornings, I saute some peppers and onions to serve over the reheated brown rice. I also like to make tomato-onion salad and serve it with a whole-wheat baguette that's been drizzled in a little olive oil and broiled. If we're doing the toast and eggs thing, I occasionally serve freshly-sliced tomatoes and cucumbers on the side. We also do the typical frittata with a mix of whatever vegetables we have on hand. Leftover taco soup is also wonderful in the morning!
  17. This is what I am doing with DS10 this year, and he's really enjoying it. In addition, I fold in Dorothy Mills' Book of the Ancient World, Book of the Ancient Greeks and Book of the Ancient Romans at the appropriate time along with historical fiction to match the time period for reading. This year our historical fiction includes The Golden Goblet and Pyramid; Greek Myths and The Trojan War; and The Bronze Bow and City. This year has certainly been our most enjoyable year by far for history! We'll definitely be doing the same thing for history next year with the BJU 7th grade text/activity manual, Mills' books and historical fiction.
  18. That syllabus is what we will be using next year, and then, we'll move on to EiL the following year, if DS chooses to continue schooling at home.
  19. Love this! It looks perfect for my DS10 and DS11! DS4 will be starting K in mid-fall of this year, and while the older two can do much of their work independently, they will need something like this to keep them on task, since I won't be able to devote as much time to staying on them about getting started with their next subject/task/assignment. They are prone to be professional dawdlers at times. :rolleyes:
  20. My plans for DS10 are as follows: Language Arts - R&S 6; Classical Comp Fable & Narrative Combo and second half of WWS1; lit selections tied to history; Abeka 6 spelling Math - R&S 6 History - BJU World Studies with Book of the Middle Ages & Book of Renaissance/Reformation by Dorothy Mills Science - BJU 6 Latin - First Form
  21. I have not used Book of the Middle Ages, but we are using Ancient World/Greeks/Romans this year. We have already finished Ancient World, and DS11 has already finished the Greeks book and will be starting the Romans soon. (DS10 is in the middle of the Greeks now.) My DC have really been enjoying her books, and they can't wait to get to history every day. I adore Mills' writing style, and I am assuming that same style carries over into her other books. DS10 will definitely be reading the Middle Ages and Renaissance books next year. I may try to have DS11 read them mid-spring through summer, as we are fast-tracking him through ancients and middle ages, so he can start American next year.
  22. Here's my current plan for next year, but it's subject to change as my DS11 may be going back to PS after next year for sports. If that's the case, I may change a few things to be sure there are no glaring gaps in his education according to our state standards. He has through the summer to decide what he wants to do, so I can plan accordingly. Language Arts - R&S 8 (for English lessons only); Classical Comp Chreia/Maxim and second half of WWS 1; Teaching the Classics and Windows to the World Math - Algebra 1 using Lial's or Dolciani Science - BJU Earth & Space Science History - first half of BJU American Republic Latin - First Form (planned on doing this this year, but it got pushed to the side) Logic - Traditional Logic 1
  23. We listen to a wide variety here, too. Early Morning/Breakfast - George Winston or similar School - Classical or Christian Acapella Late Afternoons - Jack Johnson/Bob Marley/Carlos Santana-ish or some Top 40 (but the latest Bruno Mars song that has been on the radio has me ready to cut that out) Evenings - Michael Buble/Norah Jones/Harry Connick, Jr., Cesaria Evora, Etta James, Big Band or my DH and DC playing their guitars and singing
  24. We start taking a tablespoon of elderberry syrup every day beginning in early December, and we continue to take it throughout the end of flu season. If someone begins to show any signs of sickness, they begin taking a few teaspoons every few hours until symptoms subside. We also start taking extra vitamin C in mid-fall and continue to take it through the end of February. Thankfully, we have only ever had mild colds and those nagging coughs but never the flu. This is the recipe I've been using for the elderberry syrup: http://www.mountainroseherbs.com/newsletter/10/november/elderberrysyrup.php
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